This is a group workblog for the Oni Comics series LOCAL.

"Perfect three-minute single. You're going to want this one. Trust me." - Warren Ellis
"Some of the sharpest slices of life the medium has ever seen. Highly recommended." - Brian K. Vaughan
"a rare and enviable thing... painfully easy to enjoy."- Gail Simone
"the coolest short film never shown on the IFC or Sundance Channel." - Sequential Tart
"best of 2005" - The Daily Oklahoman

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Local #8: Wicker Park, Chicago Available Today

Local #8: Wicker Park, Chicago
"Food As Substitute"
Release; Feb. 21, 2007

Local 7: Tempe, Arizona

Local 7: Tempe, Arizona
"Hazardous Youth"

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Coco Roco

Local #6

"Megan and Gloria, Apartment 5a"

Release: 9/6

Friday, May 26, 2006

Local #6 breakdown

Local #5: Coming next week.
Local #6: The experts are working on it.

Friday, March 17, 2006

Local #1 sells out, back to print w/ new cover

Originally uploaded by brianwood.
A year's worth of extra copies gone in 3 months! The book's doing very well, and here's Ryan's new cover to the reprinted #1, due at the end of this month.

If you're missing any of the issues, here's a list of order codes that any sensible comic shop can get them with. If your shop is not sensible, try Khepri.

#1 - SEP053052
#2 - OCT053136
#3 - NOV053064
#4 - DEC053141
#5 - FEB063204 (out next month)
#6 - MAR063339 (out the month after)


Friday, March 10, 2006

on Local #4, part 2

It's nice when a reviewer nails it. Local has enough built-in ambiguity that lends itself to a lot of interpretations, but also to someone just not getting it. Don MacPherson gets it:

"Wood crafts a character with such a delusion that he's owed the American Dream simply because he believes he fits the description of the stereotypical upper-middle-class man."

much more in link.


Monday, March 06, 2006

on Local #4

Chris's Invincible Super-Blog:

In the best issue of Brian Wood's [and Ryan Kelly's!] miniseries so far, our erstwhile hero Megan learns that maybe doing things like letting guys come into your apartment and leave pictures of themselves isn't such a good idea after all. It's a fantastic bit of character development: Surprising, funny, and chilling at the same time, and I get the feeling that Wood's going to parley it into a turning point for the character in upcoming issues...


Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Local #4 "Two Brothers" Out Today

Originally uploaded by brianwood.
Let us know what you think!

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Brian talks Megan & women in comics

Here on Venuszine.com:

Do you find writing female characters to be any harder than writing male characters?

Not at all. If anything, I find them easier because I've done more of it. The lead in this one book I'm writing now, called DMZ, is a guy in his early-twenties. It should be a breeze for me to write, but it's often rather difficult. I mean, there isn't a huge difference in writing men and women because, as human beings, we all tend to have the same basic instincts and reactions to things. Sarcasm and joy and anger in a broad sense are totally gender-neutral, and the difference lies in the details, but I always find it easier when it's Megan McKeenan I'm writing.


much more in the link.


Thursday, February 02, 2006

on Local, 2/2/06

One thing that occured to me as I was prepping Local #4 for print is that, unlike Demo, I am consciously considering the collected edition as I write the stories. Demo was deliberatly such a pure single-issue experience, that during the act of creating it I never considered how the stories would sit next to each other, read back to back, without a month's time separating them.

But now that I have the experience of seeing Demo collected all in one book, this is informing how I write Local. Interesting. To me, anyway.


AICN chimed in on Local yesterday, as well as other recent Oni releases:

and yielded this very flattering quote:

"So big ups to Wood and Kelly. They’re working in some kind of magical synchronicity, they’ve got a concept the biz has never seen, and they’re at the forefront of the movement to revitalize the standalone issue in comics (see also, JONAH HEX; FELL). Pretty cool stuff. In fact, at three issues in I’m confident enough in the series to start thinking of it as an early frontrunner for best miniseries of ’06."


Sunday, January 29, 2006

Graeme on Local #3

via The Savage Critic:

"LOCAL #3... manages to be an anthology of four shorter stories all about what happens afterwards, while Wood also has a character talk about creativity for an issue, giving people like me the opportunity to wonder if he’s really talking about his own creativity with lines like “To be really blunt, we were growing up. That hardcore stuff was just getting old – Or rather, we were just getting too old to be doing it… As artists, as any kind of creative person, you progress. You adapt, your art grows up with you, and to me there’s nothing sadder than musicians who’re still cranking out the same stuff 20 years later.” So, no more Channel Zero any time soon, looks like. Despite that, it all holds together well."


was waiting for someone to see a connection there. i mean, there was never any plan for more Channel Zero anyway, but the rest of it - there are some parallels.


Saturday, January 28, 2006


I find myself anticipating Jog's comments every month: (scroll a bit for Local)

"It seems that every new release in this series is determined to play around with a different approach to presentation - we had the repeating imagination structure of #1 and the long silent stretches of #2, and now we have a drifting mass of events floating from one member of a recently-disbanded musical quartet to the next, as all of them attempt to engage with a post-band life...

Involuntary narration is provided by the band’s singer/guitarist, who spends way too much of his day talking on the phone with a music journalist, who largely seems intent on relating everything going on now to the band’s past. Why did you leave Virginia? How was your sound changed? What do you think of your fans’ reactions? Writer Brian Wood quite nicely handles the tenor of the interview, the journalist adopting an apologetic stance for tough questions, gently flattering the subject to get him back on track (“Happy birthday.”) - I’ve listened to the recordings of interviews like this. The singer/guitarist thus represents the inescapable presence of what’s gone on before, (literally) stuck dealing with his and his bandmates’ own past accomplishments.

Elsewhere (as the narration continues), we have the group’s bassist/vocalist, who’s attempting to restart a relationship that got shunted aside for the sake of her art. We have the drummer, who’s dealing with the economic side of things, hawking off his old works at inflated prices... And we have the (non-singing) guitarist, who’s playing a solo set at a small club. All the while, the conversational narration continues, sometimes complimenting what we see, and sometimes contrasting with it. It’s ultimately clear that the realities of the breakup situation and the ephemeral qualities of recognition are so great, that the only truly lasting pleasure comes from the act of creation itself, and only one band member is ultimately glimpsed in what can be read as a state of unrestricted happiness.

It’s a good, low-key little story, possessed with authenticity of theme, and willing to allow its themes to simmer. The space-spanning narrative structure allows for some nice local color, and Kelly continues to do a good job with the atmosphere. For bonuses, there’s the expected essays, two pages of designs and roughs, a pair of pin-ups by Richmond-connected guest artists Chris Pitzer and Rob G., and two pages of the new ‘My Local’ feature, in which readers can send in pictures and words about their own surrounding environs."


Friday, January 27, 2006

theories, reviews...


"Continuing one of my favorite new series and even better than the first two issues. Another self-contained story (with a slight link to the first two), it's the tale of a band, Theories and Defenses, after it's broken up and returned home to Richmond, Va., after years of traveling and touring. Each of the band's four members look at picking up the pieces of their lives. Writer Brian Wood weaves all four stories around an interview the band's acerbic frontman is giving to a music magazine, and it's a real masterpiece of pacing, storytelling and setting. Each character is drawn with fine details in a tiny amount of space -- the weary, witty frontman, the sleazy drummer, the quiet professional. You get a feel for the nomadic life of a musician and how easy it is to get lost in it. Loving details by artist Ryan Kelly such as album cover art and a vivid imagined history for Theories and Defenses make this issue feel real and lived-in. Local #3 is just a great, compact and evocative little comic book, and one I'll pass on to people who think comics are all capes and spandex to show them otherwise. Grade: A+"



"It's the art of the short story, told by somebody who knows how to tell a short story.

But even better than that, it's the short story told by someone who knows how to leverage the nature of comics (that unique synthesis of word and picture) to tell the story in a way that no other medium can.

I said that Local #1 was the coolest short film you'll never see on the IFC or Sundance Channel.

To tranlate all the layers and nuances found in this issue would require a frikkin feature film.

And it's got to be one of the most perfect examples of just knowing (and using) how comics work and what they can do that words and film can't to load layers of meaning ... the medium is integral to the content of the story -- it's richness, it's depth.

Go. Buy. Read. Look at what is said and how it is said and marvel at how elegantly it all comes together."


Monday, January 23, 2006

9A, L3

Ninth Art talks a little bit about this week's LOCAL #3

"Far more interesting, to me at least, is central character Megan McKeenen. Like a number of Wood's characters, Megan labours under a kind of despondent isolation. And like the characters in the first issue of DEMO, she's a runaway, although we're not yet privy to why. The first two issues have had her moving from one doomed relationship to another as if, in her need to forge some sort of replacement roots, she's had to bypass her common sense. So while I'm keen to see how well - or how badly - Megan copes with her naiveté, I'm hoping that she turns the corner sooner rather than later."

This wednesday.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

PSA - Local #3

Release date is Jan 25th.

-The Management

Local #5 solicits


by Brian Wood & Ryan Kelly

The last lonely days at the Oxford Theater. After the traumatic events Megan survived in the last story, we next find her as the sole employee at a run-down arthouse movie theatre tucked way up north in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Lost in her own head, she joins the small but loyal crowd of patrons that gather each night for the second-run films, learning that the stories of the moviegoers themselves can, more often than not, rival what's up on the big screen.

32 pages, black and white, $2.99.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Richmond Magazine talks to me about Local

Originally uploaded by brianwood.

my local-Ryan Kelly

For the creation of Local #2: Polaroid Boyfriend I found it necessary to snap a few instant photos to reduce the dependence on my weak scatter-brained memory. I have trouble remembering simple tasks like locking the doors and taking my shoes off inside so I can’t waste any urgent brain cells on mustering up the exact visual shape of the Wedge Logo in my imagination. But, yes I have been here a long long time, and I have been to Hum’s.

If for some same strange reason you happen to wander into Minneapolis, there are many places to go when you need “something to do”. And be aware of your exact location at all times. As we stated in the back of the book, Minneapolis is medley of construction zones, architectural disasters, strip malls and suburban “lifestyle centers” that spread across the land like those bloody tentacles in War of the Worlds (not like I like Tom Cruise or anything). And don’t forget Saint Paul, My current residence, which is the Capulet to Minneapolis’ Montague. You can’t just leap into Hilltop or Richfield like a blind gazelle and call it “Minneapolis”. You’re likely to get chased down the street by an angry mob. Bloodhounds and pitchforks and everything. In Minneapolis, you can go Downtown, Uptown, Northeast, the Warehouse district, West Bank, Lake Street, and so on and so on. There is so much to do and see if you really put your mind to it. But I chose Lyndale Avenue as the main location to stage my scenes with Megan’s romantic adventure in Minneapolis.

So, I went to Lyndale and snapped some photos. I didn’t want to be a poseur so I used a genuine Polaroid instant camera because I am, of course, the original “Polaroid Boyfriend”. Looking Clockwise from left, we see The Wedge co-op (www.wedge.coop). After I snapped photos that day I went in to grab some hummus and a root beer for lunch. Mpls-St. Paul Magazine ranks The Wedge as #22 (a grocery store!) in the Best 100 Things About the Twin Cities. It is an excellent full service grocery store that has stood its ground against national chains and has earned the loyalty of neighborhood residents. But I only seem to buy hummus and a root beer. A friend told me the other day his mom designed the Wedge logo we see there on the building. That friend is in a band called CAPITAL SONS (www.capitalsons.com) and their record is shown in the hand of the record store clerk as she scolds Megan on page 16.

In the next photo we see the 22nd street side of Hum’s as it leads up to Caffetto and the hair studio with my favorite name: Curl Up and Dye. The Caffetto coffee shop is one of the first places I showed my paintings way back in the day. That is where I met Christian Johnson who was pouring joe there at the time. He decided to strike out on his own and opened his own coffee shop, The Spyhouse on Nicollet Avenue, which runs parallel to Lyndale a few blocks East. The Spyhouse is a stylishly mod coffee shop that is a preferred hangout for art school students, laptop tappers, hipsters, and just your average dude off the street. Megan’s stalker is sipping a Spyhouse cup on page 2. Christian has just opened a new diner down the street called the Bad Waitress Breakfast Joint & Coffee Shop. Who doesn’t want to eat at a place called “the Bad Waitress”?

In the next photo, we see Hum’s. They deliver and they have one of the most gorgeous art deco style storefront signs in town. If you live in Florida or something, please don’t call the number in the comic book and request a case of MGD to be delivered to your home. I will get mad at you. In the last photo, we see the door for Megan’s apartment. It is on the Lyndale avenue side and sits in between Hum’s and the Red Dragon bar. An artist I have been drawing with on a monthly comic for DC just told me his old girlfriend once lived in that exact apartment above Hum’s. I don’t know who lives there now. Don’t go there and ring the buzzer and ask for Megan McKeenan.

Well, that’s it. I hope you liked Lyndale avenue and I hoped you liked Local #2: Polaroid Boyfriend. In closing, I want to assure everyone that I DO know that the Soviettes LP2 and Low’s Great Destroyer was not released in 1995. Sometimes when you’re frantically trying to get a book done in time, you have to just put your head down, clench your fist, and tell your intern to grab something off the web and paste it in the artwork. Now I’m going to go flog myself in shame.
Love, RKelly

Thursday, December 29, 2005


Michael Drivas of Big Brain Comics in Minneapolis sends me the following message:

"I just counted the local #2's and as of this moment you are outselling Infinite Crisis at Big Brain."


Friday, December 23, 2005


Originally uploaded by brianwood.
LOCAL #5 - "The Last Lonely Days at the Oxford Theater"
(w) Brian Wood
(a) Ryan Kelly

After the traumatic events Megan survived in the last story, we next find her as the sole employee at a run-down arthouse movie theatre tucked way up north in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Lost in her own head, she joins the small but loyal crowd of patrons that gather each night for the second-run films, learning that the stories of the moviegoers themselves can, more often than not, rival what's up on the big screen.